Meltdown: Reading Kernel Memory from User Space

Moritz Lipp, Michael Schwarz, Daniel Gruss, Thomas Prescher, Werner Haas, Jann Horn, Stefan Mangard, Paul Kocher, Daniel Genkin, Yuval Yarom, Mike Hamburg, Raoul Strackx

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Memory isolation is a cornerstone security feature in the construction of every modern computer system. Allowing the simultaneous execution of multiple mutually distrusting applications at the same time on the same hardware, it is the basis of enabling secure execution of multiple processes on the same machine or in the cloud. The operating system is in charge of enforcing this isolation, as well as isolating its own kernel memory regions from other users. Given its central role on modern processors, the isolation between the kernel and user processes is backed by the hardware, in the form of a supervisor bit that determines whether code in the current.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)46-56
Number of pages11
JournalCommunications of the ACM
Volume63
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 21 May 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science(all)

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